#5in5 - Five Recovery Stories in Five Days

I don’t have to see sales figures or social media analytics to be confident in saying our Hope for Mental Health campaign has been a success.

Every day I see patients, staff and visitors in our hospital wearing Hope T-shirts, which were inspired by our patients and families, to symbolize the importance of hope in recovery.

On Thursday, May 7, we will launch our Hope Song and video, which again was driven by conversations with patients, families and staff. Both the song and video are powerful. I am excited for both to be shared publicly as I am confident people will love them.

These projects have given people living with mental illness a voice and that alone makes them successful in my mind.

Next week we have another exciting new initiative taking place in recognition of National Mental Health Week May 4-10 that also provides patients and families with a voice.

On Monday, May 4 we are launching a series called #5in5 ­– Five Recovery Stories in Five Days on #MindVine, our social media home at Ontario Shores. The series will run Monday to Friday and feature a new recovery story each day from a patient or family member.

These stories are powerful.

On Monday you will meet Chelsea, a sweet teenaged girl who has overcome bullying and social media bullying while learning to live with depression, anxiety and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).

Rhonda’s story will be featured on Tuesday. Rhonda’s daughter suffers from bipolar disorder and her family was in crisis before she was greeted by staff and volunteers at our Family Resource Centre.

On Wednesday you will meet Matthew, an immigrant who started hearing voices and became delusional shortly after settling in Canada with his wife and daughter.

Janet began noticing changes in her mental health in her late 40s. She is now 62 and learning to live with schizoaffective disorder. Her story will appear on Thursday.

The series concludes on Friday with Shadi, a young man who suffered a severe intracranial hemorrhage caused by an aneurism when he was 11.  He lived in a coma for a year.  Throughout his recovery he’s had to rediscover his place in the world. 

These stories are certain to inspire.

The patients and family members behind them are proud to be ambassadors of our Hope for Mental Health campaign and contribute to breaking down of the stigma associated with mental illness and the barriers which prevent people from reaching out for help.

We are proud of their contributions.

It’s not easy to share your private life with the world, but it is through the sharing of their recovery journeys that we will make a difference.

One in five people in Canada struggle with mental illness, but during National Mental Health Week we are turning that number on its head. #5in5 ­– Five Recovery Stories in Five Days celebrates the lives people can have when they get help and support they need to not just survive, but thrive.